We wholly recognise and understand that a majority of our learners’ are considered vulnerable and therefore require a robust multifaceted approach to securing an environment that is consistently safe.
We expect all staff have clear direction regarding the expectations of maintaining a safe learning environment. Our systems and procedures are robust and secure; our duty to safeguard is embedded into the daily working practice of all our staff.
In achieving an environment that is truly safe to learn, we will:
- Continue to ensure that procedures for safeguarding children are robust and up to date;
- Support any student who has been abused or suffered maltreatment appropriately;
- Establish a safe environment in which all students can learn and thrive;
- Deliver valuable direction and advice to all students in lessons;
- Initiate and maintain appropriate training for all staff; Ensure that all staff adhere to mandatory whistleblowing obligations;
- Work in meaningful partnership with other agencies and professionals;
- Actively encourage all of our staff to keep up to date with the most recent local and National safeguarding advice and guidance;
- Have a Designated Senior Person in place,
- Comply with our vigorous safer recruitment and selection procedures that are implemented to keep children safe from harm or potential harm;
- Raise awareness of child protection issues and equip the students with the skills necessary to keep them safe.
All members’ of our school community are aware that bullying, harassment and oppressive behaviour in any form is totally unacceptable and will not be tolerated
- Bullying, harassment and oppressive behaviour will involve clear sanctions or consequences;
- Students will be involved in creating systems to support each other;
- Strategies such as Restorative Practice or buddying and befriending systems will be adopted as appropriate.
Designated Safeguarding Team
At Westfield we have a team of people who are designated safeguarding officers, led by the Head Teacher, who is the designated Safeguarding lead.
What does a Designated Safeguarding Person do?
The role of the Designated Safeguarding Person was specified in the Children Act 2004 and ensured every organisation had a “named person” for safeguarding children and young people. Prior to that, the role had frequently been known as the Child Protection Officer. The Designated Safeguarding Person has a responsibility at both a strategic level within the organisation and on a day to day basis.
Key Aspects of the Designated Person role includes:
- Making sure all staff are aware how to raise safeguarding concerns
- Ensuring all staff understand the symptoms of child abuse and neglect
- Referring any concerns to social care
- Monitoring children who are the subject of child protection plans
- Maintaining accurate and secure child protection records
Keeping Children Safe in Education (2016) sets out the role of the Designated Safeguarding Lead in Annex B:
The broad areas of responsibility for the designated safeguarding lead are:
- Refer all cases of suspected abuse to the local authority children’s social care and:
- The designated officer(s) for child protection concerns (all cases which concern a staff member),
- Disclosure and Barring Service (cases where a person is dismissed or left due to risk/harm to a child); and/or Police (cases where a crime may have been committed).
- Liaise with the headteacher or principal to inform him or her of issues especially ongoing enquiries under section 47 of the Children Act 1989 and police investigations.
- Act as a source of support, advice and expertise to staff on matters of safety and safeguarding and when deciding whether to make a referral by liaising with relevant agencies.
The designated safeguarding lead should receive appropriate training carried out every two years in order to:
- Understand the assessment process for providing early help and intervention, for example through locally agreed common and shared assessment processes such as early help assessments.
- Have a working knowledge of how local authorities conduct a child protection case conference and a child protection review conference and be able to attend and contribute to these effectively when required to do so.
- Ensure each member of staff has access to and understands the school’s or college’s child protection policy and procedures, especially new and part time staff.
- Be alert to the specific needs of children in need, those with special educational needs and young carers.
- Be able to keep detailed, accurate, secure written records of concerns and referrals.
- Obtain access to resources and attend any relevant or refresher training courses.
- Encourage a culture of listening to children and taking account of their wishes and feelings, among all staff, in any measures the school or college may put in place to protect them.